Stars’ Pavelski Expected to Retire from NHL

Joe Pavelski #16 of the Dallas Stars | Image by Sam Hodde/Getty Images
Joe Pavelski #16 of the Dallas Stars | Image by Sam Hodde/Getty Images

Following the team’s elimination in the Western Conference Finals on Sunday, Dallas Stars right wing Joe Pavelski announced his intention to retire from the NHL, bringing an end to his 18-year professional hockey career.

Pavelski, who will turn 40 next month, just capped off his fifth season playing for the Stars after playing for the San Jose Sharks for the first 13 years of his career.

Although he acknowledged that he has not made any official plans, Pavelski told reporters on Tuesday that the “plan is not to play next year” and that he has “known for a while” that it would likely be his last season.

“We’re still moving back at some point here, decompressing and figuring all this stuff out and logistics and stuff. I don’t want to say this is official, but the plan is not to be coming back,” he said, per the milwaukee journal sentinel.

“There will be more to come on that. Everything is still so raw, nothing official. There will be more words. I’m going to need a little bit of time to really put it together and figure it out that way. Most likely that was it, and couldn’t ask for a better opportunity and a better group of guys to be around.”

The Wisconsin native was selected by the Sharks with the 205th pick in the 2003 NHL draft but did not make his league debut until 2006, where he finished the season with a total of 14 goals and 14 assists.

Pavelski’s breakout season came in 2013-14 when he scored 79 total points with 41 goals, the third-highest mark of any player in the league.

Years later, in the 2021-22 season, Pavelski posted career-highs of 81 points and 54 assists in his third season with the Stars.

Pavelski will finish his career with a total of 476 goals — the fifth-most among players currently active in the NHL — through his 1,332 career games played, which ranks as the fourth-most among active players.

Although he never won a Stanley Cup during his tenure in the league, making the finals twice in his 18-year career, Pavelski will finish his career with 74 goals in the playoffs, which is the most of any active player.

Stars forward Tyler Seguin discussed the possibility that Pavelski might retire following the team’s loss to the Oilers in Game 6, saying that ​​he has been an “amazing person to have” on the team.

“Since day one since he’s been in here, he’s meant everything to our group — on the ice, off the ice, all our golf games, he’s improved all of those,” Seguin said, per The Dallas Morning News.

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